UnitedHealth Seeks To Block Request for Documents
UnitedHealth Group on Wednesday asked a Ramsey County, Minn., district judge to block a request by Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch (D) for company documents as part of an investigation into allegations that several company officials and directors received backdated stock options, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Hatch requested documents related to UnitedHealth stock option grants from 1997 to the present, as well as compensation plans and employment agreements for company officials and directors and all documents provided for federal investigations.
UnitedHealth argues that Hatch lacks the legal authority to request the documents and that his request is overly broad. In addition, UnitedHealth contends that the request would interfere with current federal and internal investigations and that Hatch has not identified any violations of state law.
Hatch argues that as attorney general he has oversight of the state consumer fraud laws and investigative authority over state commerce laws and that he also represents the state as a shareholder. The Minnesota State Board of Investment, which administers pension plans for state employees, holds shares of UnitedHealth.
"UnitedHealth looks forward to presenting its argument to the court," the company said in a statement.
Hatch said, "They don't want to produce any documents. They want to hide them. At least they don't want to disclose them to the state."
In addition to the federal and internal investigations, UnitedHealth faces more than 12 lawsuits over allegations that company officials and directors received backdated stock options (Forster, St. Paul Pioneer Press, 6/22).